One of Cape Town’s favourite hangout spots has been vandalised and set alight. Mzoli’s Place is well known for vibey Sundays, an eclectic atmosphere and delicious Township braai food. Both locals and visitors come together under one roof for a diverse social experience.

Residents of Gugulethu set a car and Mzoli’s Place alight yesterday morning during a protest for better housing. Sisanda Mangele, Mzoli’s daughter, who has taken over from her dad, said a group of residents stormed the street and started burning tyres. Not much damage was reported inside the establishment.

Mangele said the shop was targeted because her father owned a piece of land earmarked for a prospective shopping mall. Shops next door to Mzoli’s were completely looted and vandalised too.

Gugulethu residents have been protesting for more than a week over the lack of sufficient land to build houses on. Illegal structures were erected and subsequently demolished by the City’s anti-land invasion unit. They took to the streets last week, barricading Klipfontein Road and NY 108 with burning debris, stones and bus shelters.

Police spokesperson, Andrè Traut confirmed police were out in full force calming tensions, and cases of public violence were being investigated.

Councillor Sharon Manata said the residents in the area are upset over the unavailability of houses. This violence was sparked after the removal of residents who had illegally reoccupied a piece of land in wards 41 and 40 in Gugulethu.

“The residents did not follow the legal processes to occupy that land. After a number of shacks were demolished on Thursday we had a meeting with protesters and an agreement was reached. We told them to give us a time frame of 14 days to investigate who were the owners of the land they were occupying. We are outraged and disappointed by this violence,” Manata said.

 

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